HOLDEN COMMODORE SPORTWAGON SV6
The SV6 Sportwagon sits on the next step above the entry model in its range. While the Mazda beats the Holden in terms of kit, the standard features are fine. These include 16inch alloy wheels, an 8-inch display screen, Holden’s MyLink system with embedded apps, and automatic parking.
The SV6 has a properly tough stance with its pumped-up wheel arches and broad blokey face. There are many hotted up versions around. And yet this is such a practical family bus with its spacious comfortable seating upfront and in the rear. The cargo space is an enormous 895 litres. The cabin feels refined and the touch screen and infotainment system is easy to use.
A 3.6-litre 210kW/350Nm V6 is under the bonnet which Holden has hooked up to its six speed auto. It drinks fairly heavily compared to the Mazda at a claimed 9.3L/100km, but the performance it returns is excellent. Just like the Mazda, suspension upfront in the Holden is MacPherson struts with a multi-link in the rear.
It scores five ANCAP crash test stars. There’s six airbags here, too and also like its rival there’s a reversing camera, ABS, traction and stability control and electronic brakeforce distribution. Automatic parking makes the package even safer.
The suspension tune Holden has given this car is brilliant. Rough roads are wept over without fuss, while handling is excellent too. The steering is light, but spot on, the engine is a little thirsty, but grunty and responsive when you’re in Sport mode, while that six speed auto transmission is top notch. There really isn’t much to fault here.
VERDICT The SV6 pips the Mazda to the post in the wagon war.
The diesel 6 is $41,650 and worth every cent of the extra. That’s why it, not the petrol, was a COTY finalist